TIME 2016 Election

Anti-Trump Protests Swell in Cities Across the U.S.

Thousands are rallying against what they see as Trump's racist and misogynist rhetoric

Tens of thousands of people took to the streets in cities across the U.S. on Wednesday to protest against Donald Trump following his surprise defeat of Hillary Clinton in Tuesday’s presidential election.

Disappointed voters in New York City and Chicago marched into the night, denouncing the President-elect’s rhetoric on immigrants, Muslims and other minority groups. Chants of “not my President!” were heard in cities nationwide.

The largest demonstrations looked to be in New York City, where thousands marched from various sites throughout the city and converged at the foot of Trump Tower in midtown Manhattan. Dump trucks lined the street leading up to the President-elect’s lavish 5th Avenue residence to guard the peaceful demonstrators, according to the New York Times.

“I’m more than a little nervous about the future,” Blanca Torres, an anthropology student, told the Times. “We all want to have conversations with each other, to figure out how to move forward. There’s a whole new reality out there for us now.”

In downtown Chicago and Washington, D.C., crowds also amassed outside Trump International Hotels. In Chicago, protesters chanted: “No Trump! No KKK! No racist USA.” NBC Washington reports that some protesters vandalized a number of sites in the capital and several arrests were made. Outside the White House, people gathered for a peaceful candle-lit vigil, where they “chanted, sang and prayed.”

Protests also sprung up in Oakland, Calif.; Seattle; Pittsburgh; Austin; Dallas; Philadelphia; Portland; Providence, R.I.; Atlanta; St. Paul, Minn.; and several cities around the world. The demonstrations were mostly peaceful, but there were pockets of unrest. Police in Oakland fired tear gas at protesters who threw projectiles and firecrackers at officers, reports KTVU. There were also reports of smashed storefront windows and protesters setting garbage cans on fire.

In Miami, a city home to many immigrants and a Democrat stronghold in a state that voted red on Tuesday, women of color rallied at a monument known as the Torch of Friendship, CBS reports.

“We are all afraid of what may come, but we are stronger when we are organized,” one protester said.

Dozens gathered in Lee Circle in New Orleans, the Times-Picayune reports, where they rallied as well. During the protests, some people wrote anti-Trump messages on a monument of General Robert E. Lee, who led the Confederate Army in the Civil War. The windows of a bank were also shattered during a subsequent march, but it is unclear if that was done by participants, as some described it as a peaceful protest.

Protestors allegedly vandalized two statues of Civil War heroes Jefferson Davis and Matthew Fontaine Maury in Richmond, Va., by spray painting the words “Your vote was a hate crime” on them. Hundreds marched and 10 were arrested in Richmond, CBS 6 reports.

Further up the East Coast in Massachusetts, about 4,000 people gathered at Boston Common and marched to the State House. Police described the protest as “peaceful in nature,” according to Boston.com. Social media users noted that the crowds had begun to chant “popular vote!” in reference to Clinton’s apparent lead in actual ballots. She lost on the delegate count despite being forecast to win more votes than Trump.

The West Coast simmered, as well. Hundreds of Latino high school students staged walkouts in Los Angeles, where they marched to City Hall. Many of the students were children of immigrants who had entered the U.S. illegally seeking a better future, school officials told Reuters.

U.S. Route 101, a freeway that winds along the coast of Washington State, Oregon and California, was brought to a standstill by hundreds of people in Los Angeles. Traffic was backed up for miles and the California Highway Patrol were responding, the Los Angeles Times reports. As in other towns, cries of “hands up, don’t shoot!” and “respect all women” burst from the crowd.

In Portland, dozens of demonstrators blocked traffic and burned American flags, the Associated Press reports. Hundreds filled the streets of downtown Seattle, many holding signs that read “Black Lives Matter” and some chanted the phrase “the people, united, will never be defeated!”

Deep in the country’s heartland, Texas joined in demonstration. NBC reports that some 200 people attended an anti-Trump rally through the streets of downtown Dallas, some holding signs with slogans such as “spirit unbreakable.” The rally was reportedly organized by a group of activists called the Next Generation Action Network.

Read More: The Making of President Donald Trump

Trump stunned Americans at home and abroad on Tuesday when he beat opponent Hillary Clinton following what has been considered the most polarized and fraught U.S. election in modern memory. Clinton was widely expected to clinch the victory and become the first female President in U.S. history.

Throughout the campaign period, Trump came under fierce criticism for his zero-tolerance stance on immigration and remarks he has made about both women and minorities.

 

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